Participants at the workshop for developing Umm Al-Qura University courses according to Saudi Vision 2030 that was organized by the Vice Presidency of the University for Educational Affairs and attended by his Excellency the President of the University, Prof. Abdullah Bafail, and vice presidents, recommended the necessity of paying attention to the contents of the current courses and concentrating on quality, not quantity. They also recommended developing these courses to be in harmony with the requirements of different specializations. They suggested special courses pertaining to creativity and entrepreneurship, professional ethics, communication skills, time management, teamwork, and concentration on graduates' efficiencies with regard to moral, ethical, skillful and cognitive aspects.
The team leader of the Empowerment Plan 2023, Dr. Ayman Jawahirji, pointed out during the two analytical strategies workshops of "The Blue Ocean" and "The Values Tree" that the set of recommendations made at the workshop seeks to appropriate the requirements of the university courses with the needs of the labor market according to Vision 2030, in addition to the skills of the 21st century.
Dr. Jawahirji asserted that they have discussed the process of adding language courses and promoting knowledge of the Arabic language, especially editing and dictation skills. The workshop focused on the development of the English and Chinese courses, in addition to adding courses teaching vernacular languages used in Hajj and Umrah. The workshop participants also considered adding diverse optional courses in line with the needs of the labor market.
His Excellency the Vice President of the University for Educational Affairs, Dr. Abdulaziz Suruji, pointed out that the workshop was preceded by a questionnaire that was conducted in different fields relating to current courses and the key suggested themes for adding new courses. Five thousand participants from the academic staff, students, graduates, and employers in the labor market participated in this questionnaire.
He pointed out that the workshop discussed the best ways and methods to produce a clear and deliberate work mechanism to develop the courses and the themes they depend on. He said that 100 experts from different academic specializations participated in this workshop and that the outcomes of the workshop will be analyzed and sent to the Ministry of Education to be approved and admitted into the university's educational plans.
His Excellency the President of the University asserted that the workshop aims at studying and analyzing public courses that students study. His Excellency added that they aimed at producing recommendations that define the obligatory and optional courses that will have a positive effect on the students in their search for knowledge. He also praised the continuous support of His Excellency Dr. Hamad Al Al-Sheikh, the Minister of Education, for the different activities and programs of the university.
It is worth mentioning that representatives of different fields of the university community, including students, graduates, and academic staff participated in the workshop to contribute in producing concepts that serve the educational outcomes of the university in a way that is in line with Saudi Vision 2030.